Generally favorable reviews - based on 29 Critics What's this?

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Universal acclaim- based on 405 Ratings

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  • Summary: Psychonauts is a wildly surreal action adventure game where personal paranormal powers are unlocked in order to plunge into the minds of bizarre characters. Journey deep into these crazy worlds of infinite possibility to thwart the secret plan of an evil madman and realize the ultimate dream of joining an elite force of psychic superheroes, the Psychonauts. Delve into people's minds as Raz, a powerful young cadet at psychic summer camp. While working on his levitation merit badge, Raz discovers that someone is kidnapping psychic children and stealing their brains. In order to foil this evil plot and earn the title of Psychonaut, Raz must project himself into the minds of one bizarre character after another to battle their nightmares and mental demons. He does all this while continuing to earn his psychic merit badges in Telekinesis, Clairvoyance, Pyrokinesis and more. Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 29
  2. Negative: 0 out of 29
  1. 100
    It’s one of the most original, creative and inspired titles out there and even better—-it’s one of those rare videogames that can actually make you laugh out loud.
  2. Psychonauts may not be particularly innovative in any of its undertakings, but it breathes new life into a stale genre by virtue of its humor and creativity alone.
  3. The fact that Psychonauts isn’t on the radar as one of this year’s big releases is a major shame, as it is, quite simply, superb.
  4. A breath of fresh air that has restored faith in platforming adventure titles. Within the first three minutes of gameplay, one realizes just how funnily bizarre this title is.
  5. A wildly imaginative platform adventure. Framerate and visibility issues are a bit of a letdown, though. [Mar 2006]
  6. I’d rather spend my nights playing Psychonauts than a "Myst" or "Resident Evil" title, barring perhaps "Resident Evil 4." It’s livelier, funnier, and more original, in an age when sequels are the only safe bets for publishers.
  7. It’s not revolutionary by any means, nor is it particularly long, but thanks to some clever creative control the game delivers a funny, engrossing and downright weird experience unlike most other platform adventures. [July 2005, p.104]

See all 29 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 4 out of 113
  1. Feb 10, 2012
    One of the best platformers out there, if not the best. No review is needed, just take my hearty recommendation and buy this game. Anyone that tells you otherwise doesn't know what they're talking about. Expand
  2. Aug 11, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. probably the most original game ever, psychonauts was one of my favorites growing up. i got it on steam and all i can say is, i understand why i liked it so much. you play as a kid named raz, short for razputin, a kid who has phychic abilities. so you naturally run away from your home (the circus) and sneak in the camp. after a funny intro sequence, you can explore the overworld. there's not much in it yet, but it's fun to collect arrowheads, the games currency, in between levels. you soon discover where the levels take place, in peoples minds. after you beat the first level named "basic braining" you can explore the whole camp. you soon get invited to special training by psychonaut sasha nein. so after you go to his training facility you get in his mind and unlock psi blasts. the next levels have you going in your own mind, having to leave the the level twice to unlock powerups to progress. eventually your love interest lilli gets abducted by a lake monster called a lungfish. after a meh boss you go in it's mind where you are a godzilla monster named goggalor with one objective, destroy everything. you soon befriend the lungfish (her name's linda) and she takes you to an insane asylum conveniently placed near the camp where all you have to collect your fellow camper's brains. the minds you go through consist of a level where you try to solve a mystery and find out who the milkman is, a theater, a risk style board game featuring fred and napolean bonaparte, and my favorite, black velvetopia, a place that has you joining wrestling matches to build a tower of cards and fight a bull. once you climb up to the end of the asylum, you meet sheegor, who is voiced by tara strong also, raz is voiced by the person who was invader zim). you soon fight your corrupted camp leader's brain in a "brain tank". but once you win, the tank pours out sneezing powder that causes you to sneeze your brain out. you then launch your brain in the tank and your minds collide, causing the next and final level to be a mix between both your minds. this level is also notoriously hard and honestly, i don't see why. even as a kid i beat it without dieing once. after that you fight the last boss, but not before you unlock your super form. while this boss is easy, it's epic. then the game is over. Expand
  3. Feb 9, 2012
    How many times have I passed this game? Million! And every time I passed this game with pleasure! A wonderful game... Suitable for gameplay characters, original graphics, great story... Excellent, just excellent! Expand
  4. Oct 10, 2011
    One of the most creative and fun games ever created! Everyone owes it to themselves to play this game. The character dialogue is compelling and humorous and the storyline is epically strange. Expand
  5. Nov 23, 2012
    I originally played this back on the original Xbox and it remains one of my favorite games of all time. The storyline and art style of Psychonauts just oozes with originality and the characters are some of the most memorable ever to appear in a game title.

    As a platformer, this is a pretty standard Mario style
  6. Dec 7, 2011
    This is one of those games that people either love or hate. Where you fall depends on whether you care more about somewhat lacking controls or about a creative, unique story and quirky characters. Psychonauts may have below average gameplay, but they are never game-breaking and, at least for me, the story and environments keep me immersed and laughing throughout the entire game. The story is also genuinely funny. The music is nothing special in most cases and at time, some of them can get annoying. The bottom line is: if you want an adventure that will stay with you, long after you stopped playing and you can get over the less-then-perfect controls, $10 is a steal for Psychonauts. Expand
  7. Mar 6, 2012
    Positives: It's certainly original, which is nice to see these days (+3)
    It runs fine on my PC with no noticeable defects (+1)
    It's good to
    see more titles from independent developers (+1)
    As far as I can tell, the game is quite expensive, and power-ups are awarded in due course (+2)

    The Art style isn't to my liking, but it isn't bad.
    It's kind of cheesy, but that's not a good or bad thing.

    Bad Camera Control, which is a very bad thing for a 3D platformer (-3)
    Annoying amount of foreseeable backtracking, though I've only managed to play 94 minutes before giving up (-2)
    The powerups are given out too slowly (-1)
    The 'humor' is absolutely awful (-2)
    EXTREMELY REPETITIVE, which is another major flaw for a platformer (-3)
    Character voices are very grating (-1)
    I'd like to go on, but I fear I've generated enough infamy by now.

    TOTAL SCORE: < -5
    Having a total score of less than -5 puts it quite a bit below average, but it does have its good points, so it doesn't deserve a 0. Since I didn't pay full price (sales) i can deign to give it a lowly 2.

    How anyone can find this game entertaining is beyond me, and if anyone wishes to provide me with a counter-argument, be my guest. It is currently the only game in my steam library (of over 110 games) that I have uninstalled.

See all 113 User Reviews